MALAYSIAN officials continue to drum up interest of the 2017 Southeast Asian Games with the staging of the second leg of the SEA Games Rising Together Baton Run on Sunday morning around Manila.
Hundreds of runners ranging from athletes, coaches, government employees and officials, and students joined in the festivities, taking the SEA Games baton through the streets of Manila from the Mabini Hall in Malacanang to the Cultural Center of the Philippines grounds.
“The Baton Run symbolizes the celebration of unity and shared values of the Southeast Asian nations … We aim to promote the Asean spirit through sporting activities,” said Malaysia Minister for Youth and Sports Khairy Jamaluddin Abu Bakar in a speech read by Malaysian Ambassador to the Philippines Dato Raszlan Abdul Rashid.
The first leg of the Rising Together Baton Run was held last week in Brunei.
“I am more pleased to see the very same spirit and commitment was replicated by the people of the Philippines,” said Abu Bakar.
Abdul Rashid handed over the SEA Games baton to Laos deputy chef de mission Souksanith Vongphankhan, whose country will next hold the baton run next week.
Philippine Sports Commission chairman William Ramirez pledged to promote friendship between Asean nations.
“In behalf of the Filipinos, in the spirit of true friendship, we are willing to continue the journey of Rising Together as Asean,” said Ramirez.